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My Age of Anxiety

My Age of Anxiety [Kindle Edition]

Scott Stossel
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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"Unflinchingly honest and written in an accessible style.This is a courageous, entertaining and well-researched book about a condition that is thought to currently affect 15 percent if people in the UK." (Independent)

"[A] vivid, smart exploration of the history of anxiety. Stossel tackles genetics, nature and nurture, drug development, and changing medical and philosophical attitudes with the lightest of touches." (Marie Claire)

"For anyone who wants to know all about anxiety from a dazzlingly honest sufferer's perspective, it's hard to imagine a better book than this." (BBC Focus magazine)

"He brings to this story depth, intelligence and perspective that could enlighten untold fellow sufferers for years to come." (Elizabeth Gilbert)

"Fascinating and hugely entertaining. An intense, incredibly brave narrative tinged with moments of outright hilarity, it's impossible to put down." (Ben Mezrich)

Book Description

A riveting, revelatory and moving account of one man's battle with anxiety, and a history of the efforts to understand the condition by scientists, philosophers, artists, and writers, from Freud to Hippocrates and from Samuel Johnson to Charles Darwin.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
By malkiel
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book to me cover 2 areas. Firstly it is a personal account of the author's anxiety disorder, he has a major anxiety disorder and he pulls no punches in revealing the entire extent of the distress that this has caused in his life. The other part is a review of all the therapies which have been used to cure anxiety disorders up until the present day and because the author is a journalist he has used his investigative and writing skills to present a complete and detailed review on the status of current treatments. I suffered from an anxiety disorder, which started when I was 19 and largely finished when I was 47, and this caused a dark shadow over my life during that time. I have been confused ever since about what happened to me and I found this book a tremendous help firstly because as bad as I thought my condition was, it was less than Scott Stossel's condition and this helped me to put things into context. Secondly I found the review of treatments very useful. The author had 25 years of therapy and tried every drug available. In contrast I had no therapy and did not take any drugs and laboured on as best I could on my own. After reading the book I have reached the somewhat surprising conclusion that my way was about as effective as the Mr Stossel's way.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not just for those of a nervous disposition! 4 Feb 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
For those who have never suffered from anxiety (and according to research you may well be sociopaths) this will seem like a load of self-indulgent rambling but for the rest of us this is a fascinating book on the history of anxiety and up to date research and treatment. In between we hear the author's own struggles with anxiety - some of which are hilarious.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars deep and brave 2 Feb 2014
Scott Stossel, author of this book, since childhood suffered from anxiety disorder. He was afraid to be alone, worrying that something happens to his parents. Over the years, Stossel lived with his disorders and phobias, whose number exceeded 20. The book opens with a scene of Stossel’s wedding, when he almost loses consciousness because of anxiety attacks and with great difficulty completes the whole wedding ceremony.

The author immediately warns us that he is not a doctor, not a specialist in mental disorders, not a psychologist. This book is not a medical investigation, it is half memoir, half journalistic investigation. Stossel is a journalist and editor, who took leave during the writing of the book. And we can say that it is a miracle it was finished, so many times the author suffered from panic attacks. He was afraid to miss a deadline, afraid that because of the leave he can be fired from his job, and during the writing ofthis book his family have been through many unpleasant moments. Nevertheless, My Age of Anxiety was completed, published, and it turned out quite successful.

The book turned out brave, though Stossel does not consider himself brave. He goes through his phobias, his dependence on drugs, his family tree. Anxiety disorder and other phobias run and determined life of the author. He was forced to adapt to his anxiety, has to carry a pack of pills, and in case of some important events to pump himself with medicines, often also drinking alcohol, to somehow control his fear.

Stossel elaborates on the development of drugs against psychological disorders, their implementation, and a change in general studies of their effects. Medicine against panic and anxiety existed early in the last century, but were used for general purpose.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful and. Brilliant 9 Mar 2014
I have a very dear friend, my best friend actually, who has made claims forever about the debilitating anxiety that she endures every morning. A brilliant woman, an Ivy League grad school graduate, yet she almost can't get out of bed because it overwhelms her. I have, on occasion, had what I consider very high anxiety. But it doesn't get me often and it doesn't keep me the way that it seems to grab hold of my friend and the author of this book, Stossel.

I read this book with great interest. It was engaging and it helped me better understand (and believe) what happens to my girlfriend and others. I never truly believed it could be this bad, I mean how can she have managed to come so far if it was truly all of that? This book has shown me otherwise with the great many very successful people who have suffered from the same thing. I found that one of the more inspiring things about the book.

The book, in addition to enlightening me to the world of people like my friend and Stossel, also kept me amused. The humor so reminded me of the humor with which my friend explains her similar problems.

I really enjoyed this book. It was extremely well written and entertaining. I have passed it along to my previously mentioned friend. Although she won't find cures or answers, she might take some comfort in the good company.

This book is highly recommended for anyone suffering with anxiety or who loves someone who is.

**update** when I told my friend about giving her this book to read, she was extremely excited. She is seeing Scott Stossel at some speaking engagement next week in Hollywood. She had heard about this book and his story on NPR and immediately told me "He has the same crippling anxieties I do. My shrink told me to read his book!" So apparently this book is shrink and NPR recommended.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting aspects
This is a long book. Perhaps too long to really hold my attention but there is no doubting it is very well researched. Read more
Published 10 days ago by Laura W
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved this book for the authors honesty
A long book that covered every aspect of fear, anxiety, phobias and all else. The author was very honest about his own ongoing situation and he describes his own fears and phobias... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
3.0 out of 5 stars Good book, could be better
I was expecting it to be more along the lines of Siddhartha Mukherjee's "The Emperor of All Maladies", but it wasn't nearly as well written.
Published 1 month ago by Amanda Goncalves
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Brilliant
A brave look into the affects, causes and treatments for those suffering with life crippling anxiety. Excellently written. Well done Scott!
Published 1 month ago by Alchemy2011
4.0 out of 5 stars An anxious layman's researches into his own and others' anxiety
Scott Stossell who is deeply anxious - the book opens with a memorable description of his anxieties about vomiting, fainting and so on during his marriage ceremony - has spent 8... Read more
Published 2 months ago by William Jordan
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating and illuminating
With a solid account of the history of the thinking and the treatment of anxiety disorder this is a fascinating account of the personal experience of anxiety. Read more
Published 2 months ago by sarahg
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth a read if you have anxiety or know someone with it (chances are,...
Thorough and interesting insight into the complexities and history of anxiety disorders with the personal experiences and difficulties described making it all the more emotive.
Published 2 months ago by Janeyes
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